Reckon: Data Management within the True View Ecosystem
Published On: February 04, 2020
The True View Solution
Our True View 3D Imaging Sensor (3DIS), the True View 410, is more than just a sensor. It includes all the surround technology to take you from flying a project to delivering accurate products. Part of this solution is the processing software bundled with the system, True View Evo. True View Evo lets users ingest data from a True View sensor and process to end products without the need to employ other software applications. This is a huge reduction in workflow complexity and a big-time saver.
Processing data from a small unmanned aerial system (sUAS) is a very high data volume task. We believe this is best accomplished on a desktop workstation with high speed local disk. This locality of processing does bring on challenges in managing data that need to be shared such as sensor calibration files, access to processing "points" for metered services and so forth. To address this need, we have merged our (AirGon) Reckon product into the True View ecosystem.
What is Reckon?
Reckon is an Amazon Web Services (AWS) hosted solution that we have built from the ground up to manage certain aspects of survey/mapping sUAS projects. It has been used by quite a few customers over the years to manage the analytic results of drone mapping projects. In fact, just in the past year we have integrated "potree", a high-performance 3D viewer, into Reckon (see Figure 1 for an example). There are two True View-specific elements that have already been added to Reckon: managing True View Points and managing sensor calibration files.
Figure 1 - 3D Mine Site View
True View Points Management
True View Points accounting is keeping up with the points you are automatically allocated (for subscriptions sensors) or purchase (for both owned and subscription sensors). These points are consumed for processing subscription model sensors and for certain ad hoc processing modes for "Owned" sensors. For example, in Figure 2 I have requested processing using Trimble's PP-RTX positioning solution (a base station-less, global processing mode). The dialog shows that 50 True View Points will be deducted from my account for this processing mode. This is an extremely flexible feature as it allows you to use Trimble PP-RTX on a "pay-as-needed" (or "metered") model rather than making you purchase a multi-thousand-dollar annual PP-RTX subscription.
Figure 2 - True View Evo to Reckon dialog for points
Sensor Calibration Files
Handling sensor calibration files can be a real configuration management nightmare. Sensor re-calibrations are periodically performed for a variety of reasons; ensuring that the correct calibration parameters are used for a specific flight is critical toward obtaining the highest possible accuracy. We have automated this process via Reckon. When we calibrate a sensor at our test range here at GeoCue, we do not email a file around; we post it to the calibration section of Reckon. The next time data from the sensor is processed in True View Evo, a request is made to Reckon for available calibration files for that particular serial numbered sensor. Using a Date/Series logic, True View selects the best calibration parameters for the flight. This service is just one of many novel approaches we are taking to simplify data processing from our 3D Imaging True View Sensor.